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Online database to help improve animal welfare laws

Animal welfare, the overuse of antibiotics, and environmental protection are among topics covered by a free, global database that analyzes laws and policies relating to farmed animals.

The aim of the Coller Animal Law Forum (CALF) is to help policymakers, parliamentarians, researchers, and advocates keen to increase the sustainability of our food production system. CALF was established in 2021 by the Jeremy Coller Foundation. It enables users to compare the laws and policies of different countries and identify those pushing ahead with reforms and those trailing behind.

CALF covers both draft and enacted legislation and provides factsheets that may be useful in preparing laws and policies. One factsheet highlights the development of the five domains concept as a result of the failings of the five freedoms – freedom from hunger and thirst; from discomfort; from pain, injury, and disease; freedom to behave naturally; and freedom from fear and distress.

The five freedoms were the basis for EU animal welfare legislation in the 1970s but because of exemptions, CALF says, EU law “still allows inhumane common industry practices, such as extreme confinement, the use of cages, and mutilations.”

The five domains extends the scope of animal welfare assessment “to include the animals’ mental state and their ability to interact with the environment in which they are kept” and “entails a change in approach when assessing and improving animal welfare by measuring positive experiences in addition to negative ones.”

Infographic explaining the five domains


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